Sunday, February 28, 2016

'Nautical' from FranL - '15mm Somali pirates, a little nautical controversy?'


15 Somali pirates from Khurasan Miniatures, all 15mm, will more than likely use these in my African Militia forces...

Many Somali pirates see themselves as good guys. And at one point, they were. After the government in Mogadishu collapsed in 1991, neighboring countries began illegally fishing in Somali waters. The first pirates were simply angry fishermen who boarded these foreign vessels and demanded a "fee." But as the illegal fishing persisted, some early pirates banded together and called themselves "coast guards." They claimed to be looking after Somalia's territorial integrity until the government could pull itself back together.


These weren't the only vigilantes on the scene, however. Other pirates made their debut robbing U.N. ships that were carrying food to refugee camps in Somalia. These bandits argued that if they hadn't taken the food, warlords would have seized it on land. And they had a good point. Warlords gobbled down at lot of Somalia's relief food during the 1990's.


But from these perhaps defensible beginnings, piracy spread farther from Somalia's shores and evolved into a multi-million-dollar enterprise. Today, pirates are blunt about their motives. In late 2008, after a band of pirates seized a Ukrainian freighter full of weapons and demanded $25 million for its release, Sugule Ali, a member of the pirate crew, told a reporter, "We only want the money."


By December 2013, the US Office of Naval Intelligence reported that only 9 vessels had been attacked during the year by the pirates, with zero successful hijackings. Control Risks attributed this 90% decline in pirate activity from the corresponding period in 2012 to the adoption of best management practices by vessel owners and crews, armed private security on board ships, a significant naval presence, and the development of onshore security forces.

In January 2014, the MV Marzooqah initially sent out a distress signal indicating that it was under attack by pirates in the Red Sea. However, the container vessel turned out instead to have been seized by Eritrean military units as it entered Eritrea's territorial waters.

31 comments:

  1. Clearly, one man's pirate is another man's coast guard - it's all down to context, I suppose.

    One thing that ISN'T open to interpretation is the quality of this entry - excellent work, Fran, far beyond my eyesight to manage!

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  2. Now that's a motley looking crew, not sure I would want them looking after my boat! Cracking entry Fran!

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  3. Very rough looking crew. But then again so we're Drake and Hawkins!

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  4. Top work Fran. they sure do look the part!

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  5. Nice figures Fran and you did a splendid job with the basing!

    Also thank you for taking the time to include the history!

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    1. Thanks Anne, I like the history sometimes more than the figures!

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  6. Wretched looking pirates, Fran, and I mean that in a good way! The benevolent, dicator-for-life needs some dilapidated riverine and speedy skiffs for this bunch! ;)

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  7. Great entry Francis and thought provoking. As an aside, I see ship security as a good use of PMCs and their skillsets.

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    1. Absolutely, they have many possibilities!

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  8. Clever! They need some speedboats next.

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  9. While not a fan of the subject, I am a fan of the painting. There is no doubt that the world would be better off without modern pirates. But I can understand their actions entirely.

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  10. Really cool Fran, I do guess these would create quite the racket when boarding any boat or sheep, ship?!

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  11. Great figures and very useful for lots of modern wargames.

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  12. Nice pirate choice Fran and well done!

    Christopher

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  13. fascinating stuff, modern history indeed. Great job on the figures too, oodles of detail painted very nicely.

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  14. Great job on these modern day Pirates. It's incredible how some countrys can exist in modern times without really having a Government. Mad Max in reality I guess. cheers

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